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Media Contact: Steve Lightfoot, 512-389-4701, steve.lightfoot@tpwd.texas.gov [SL]

TPWD Website: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us

TPWD News Release — Aug. 26, 2008

Mentored Dove Hunting Workshop Sept. 19-20 at Justin Hurst WMA

AUSTIN, Texas — An innovative public hunting opportunity for newcomers, the Mentored Hunting Permit, will launch this fall with a dove hunting workshop Sept. 19-20 at the Justin Hurst Wildlife Management Area near Freeport, Texas.

The family-friendly event is designed to introduce participants to hunting and provide hands-on knowledge and experience for hunting dove and other game in Texas. u

The mentored hunting workshop will focus on teaching hunting skills, safety, ethics, game processing and preparation, elements of habitat management, and provide guidance and advice for hunting activities in the future. As part of the workshop, participants will be offered the opportunity to take part in a mentored dove hunt accompanied by an experienced hunter.

Reservations are on a first-come, first-served basis and space is limited to 20 participants. Information about the event, including registration form, is available on the TPWD Web site or by calling urban wildlife biologist Richard Heilbrun at 210-688-6444. Cost for the workshop is $35 and the Mentored Hunting Permit, which covers cost for access to the dove hunt, is $25.

Participants must also have a valid Texas hunting license and Texas Migratory Game Bird Stamp and have satisfied Hunter Education Certification requirements or purchase the Hunter Education Deferral prior to the weekend of Sept. 19.

"The mentored hunting program is intended to explore possible ways to increase hunter recruitment," said Linda Campbell, director of public hunting with TPWD. "By offering these educational workshops and mentored hunting opportunities, we hope to provide an effective vehicle for people who are not from traditional hunting backgrounds to learn about and get started in hunting."

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission approved the new hunter recruitment initiative as a means of providing opportunities for people interested in participating in a multi-day hunter recruitment workshop on a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department WMA. Participation will be by reservation, on a first-come, first-served basis, and the fee for the Mentored Hunting Permit will be $25.

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